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June 27, 2013 01:00 AM

For years, Joss Whedon fans have been reading about the writer-director-composer’s Shakespeare brunches — at which cast members from his beloved shows would gather, drink, eat, read the Bard’s plays and generally (we imagine) have about as much fun as nerds can have with their clothes on. With the release of Much Ado About Nothing, we finally get to attend one of these famed brunches, though the mimosas are BYO. 

For years, Joss Whedon fans have been reading about the writer-director-composer’s Shakespeare brunches — at which cast members from his beloved shows would gather, drink, eat, read the Bard’s plays and generally (we imagine) have about as much fun as nerds can have with their clothes on. With the release of Much Ado About Nothing, we finally get to attend one of these famed brunches, though the mimosas are BYO. 

June 20, 2013 01:00 AM

Superman, who originally hails from both a different planet and a different era, is often a tough sell with modern audiences who’ve gotten used to conflicted heroes, anti-heroes and intriguing bad guys. Superman — with a smile and a cape, the embodiment of a certain kind of American ideal — is just so good.

Superman, who originally hails from both a different planet and a different era, is often a tough sell with modern audiences who’ve gotten used to conflicted heroes, anti-heroes and intriguing bad guys. Superman — with a smile and a cape, the embodiment of a certain kind of American ideal — is just so good.

It turns out he’s a little conflicted after all. 

June 13, 2013 01:00 AM

In 1994’s Before Sunrise, twentysomethings Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and Celine (Julie Delpy) met on a train. After one very talkative, very special night together, they parted ways, agreeing to meet in six months. It was nine years before they met again, in Before Sunset: Jesse wrote a book based on their first meeting, and Celine found him at a Paris reading. 

In 1994’s Before Sunrise, twentysomethings Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and Celine (Julie Delpy) met on a train. After one very talkative, very special night together, they parted ways, agreeing to meet in six months. It was nine years before they met again, in Before Sunset: Jesse wrote a book based on their first meeting, and Celine found him at a Paris reading. 

June 6, 2013 01:00 AM

There are 27-year-olds who have their shit together, but I wasn’t one of them. If you were, you may watch Noah Baumbach’s Frances Ha as a sort of anthropological study: the still-questing twentysomething, running into pitfalls and learning (the hard way, of course) that expectation goes hand-in-hand with entitlement, and neither are in sync with reality very often.

There are 27-year-olds who have their shit together, but I wasn’t one of them. If you were, you may watch Noah Baumbach’s Frances Ha as a sort of anthropological study: the still-questing twentysomething, running into pitfalls and learning (the hard way, of course) that expectation goes hand-in-hand with entitlement, and neither are in sync with reality very often.

May 30, 2013 01:00 AM

The popular perspective on animation tends to lie within the realm of Saturday morning cartoons or late-night adult comedy like South Park or Family Guy. But Portland’s Northwest Animation Festival is trying to change these classic conceptions of animation. And this year, the festival is bringing its expansive, carefully curated program down to Eugene.

The popular perspective on animation tends to lie within the realm of Saturday morning cartoons or late-night adult comedy like South Park or Family Guy. But Portland’s Northwest Animation Festival is trying to change these classic conceptions of animation. And this year, the festival is bringing its expansive, carefully curated program down to Eugene.

“We’ve put a lot of effort into building our audience in Portland,” says festival director Sven Bonnichsen. “We’re hoping to do the same in Eugene.”

May 23, 2013 01:00 AM

Four years ago, J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek reboot pulled off a slick little trick. A shiny, whizbang movie with an excellent ensemble cast, the 2009 Trek restarted the series timeline, giving Abrams and company endless freedom to boldly go to entirely new places, unencumbered by the history writ in the TV shows and earlier films. 

Four years ago, J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek reboot pulled off a slick little trick. A shiny, whizbang movie with an excellent ensemble cast, the 2009 Trek restarted the series timeline, giving Abrams and company endless freedom to boldly go to entirely new places, unencumbered by the history writ in the TV shows and earlier films. 

May 16, 2013 01:00 AM

Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby is a loud, lavish, unevenly paced but ultimately compelling adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s celebrated novel about a man, the woman he yearns for and how, in yearning for what once was, he is destroyed by the past — that past into which we are all ceaselessly borne back.

Director Baz Luhrmann’s risky, gamboling Romeo + Juliet (1996) proved, once again, that Shakespeare’s best stuff can withstand any infringement of time and run with it — including gang warfare, palm trees and the wowzers of an acid trip. Recall, if you dare, the raw but playful sexuality of this scene: Claire Danes as Juliet, spying through a massive fish tank and catching her first aquamarine glimpse of Romeo, as the gaunt, slightly extra-terrestrial face of a young Leonardo DiCaprio seems to swim through the coral. It’s an exquisite moment.

May 9, 2013 01:00 AM

Stanley Kubrick created The Shining to exorcise his guilt for helping fake the 1969 Apollo moon landing, to represent the genocide of Native Americans or to retell the Greek myth Theseus and the Minotaur.

Stanley Kubrick created The Shining to exorcise his guilt for helping fake the 1969 Apollo moon landing, to represent the genocide of Native Americans or to retell the Greek myth Theseus and the Minotaur.

May 2, 2013 01:00 AM

It feels oddly rude to complain about a movie like The Company You Keep, with its sprawling cast of oft-underused actors from across generations and its well-intentioned plot, which sweeps Vietnam-era radicals up and drops them into the present. But Robert Redford’s latest film is an unsettled mixed bag.

It feels oddly rude to complain about a movie like The Company You Keep, with its sprawling cast of oft-underused actors from across generations and its well-intentioned plot, which sweeps Vietnam-era radicals up and drops them into the present. But Robert Redford’s latest film is an unsettled mixed bag, despite valiant efforts from Chris Cooper, Anna Kendrick, Richard Jenkins and Nick Nolte (to name just a few).

April 25, 2013 01:00 AM

Jack Harper (Tom Cruise) is nobody special. On Earth in 2077, he and his colleague/girlfriend Victoria (Andrea Riseborough) are the clean-up crew of a dead planet. An alien war destroyed the moon, which spreads like a smashed boulder across the sky; the parts of the planet not already destroyed by the war were subject to earthquakes and tsunamis.

Jack Harper (Tom Cruise) is nobody special. On Earth in 2077, he and his colleague/girlfriend Victoria (Andrea Riseborough) are the clean-up crew of a dead planet. (You might, distantly, be reminded of Wall-E.) An alien war destroyed the moon, which spreads like a smashed boulder across the sky; the parts of the planet not already destroyed by the war were subject to earthquakes and tsunamis. Now, giant machines suck up what’s left of the ocean, creating power for human colonies in space.

April 18, 2013 01:00 AM

The Place Beyond the Pines is an ambitious, beautifully filmed follow-up to director/co-writer Derek Cianfrance’s Blue Valentine (2010). That bleak bruise of an indie darling gave a stamp of greatness to the careers of Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling, and it divided viewers, who thought it was a searing portrait of a dissolving marriage — or thought it had little to say. 

The Place Beyond the Pines is an ambitious, beautifully filmed follow-up to director/co-writer Derek Cianfrance’s Blue Valentine (2010). That bleak bruise of an indie darling gave a stamp of greatness to the careers of Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling, and it divided viewers, who thought it was a searing portrait of a dissolving marriage — or thought it had little to say. 

April 18, 2013 01:00 AM

Cinema Pacific, the annual festival featuring films from Pacific-bordering countries, is in full swing, and like any good film festival there is a dizzying array of options for movie buffs and casual cinemagoers alike to choose from. This year’s focus will be on films and filmmakers from Singapore, Mexico and the U.S. West Coast.

Cinema Pacific, the annual festival featuring films from Pacific-bordering countries, is in full swing, and like any good film festival there is a dizzying array of options for movie buffs and casual cinemagoers alike to choose from. This year’s focus will be on films and filmmakers from Singapore, Mexico and the U.S. West Coast.

April 11, 2013 01:00 AM

It’s finally getting a little easier to look at Gael García Bernal and not see the young man from Y Tu Mamá También. García Bernal has hardly seemed to age since that 2002 film, but as René Saavedra, in the Oscar-nominated Chilean film No, he has a scrappy beard dotted with just enough gray to make him believable as the father of a young son.

It’s finally getting a little easier to look at Gael García Bernal and not see the young man from Y Tu Mamá También. García Bernal has hardly seemed to age since that 2002 film, but as René Saavedra, in the Oscar-nominated Chilean film No, he has a scrappy beard dotted with just enough gray to make him believable as the father of a young son.

April 11, 2013 01:00 AM

As my old Seattle friend Big Gay Bob once told me years ago over gin fizzes: “Honey, nobody has more fun than the gays.” It’s true: Not only do gay people tend to earn more, dress better and screw more often than straight folk, but they really do know how to cut a rug, if you know what I mean.

As my old Seattle friend Big Gay Bob once told me years ago over gin fizzes: “Honey, nobody has more fun than the gays.” It’s true: Not only do gay people tend to earn more, dress better and screw more often than straight folk, but they really do know how to cut a rug, if you know what I mean. I’d even take this one step further and argue that were it not for the gays, this would be one bleak, narrow existence. 

April 4, 2013 01:00 AM

Two sets of fingerprints are smeared all over The Host, a quiet sci-fi story about a strange invasion. The film is based on the novel by Stephenie Meyer, whose weaknesses as a writer have been plentifully detailed.

Two sets of fingerprints are smeared all over The Host, a quiet sci-fi story about a strange invasion. The film is based on the novel by Stephenie Meyer, whose weaknesses as a writer have been plentifully detailed. Her dialogue is leaden, her adjectives overused, her love triangles — or squares — so predictable that my date leaned over, midway through The Host, to say of its matching blond hunks, “I’m confused about which one is Robert Pattinson and which is the werewolf guy.”

March 28, 2013 01:00 AM

Yes, yes, yes: Spring Breakers, the latest film by aging wunderkind Harmony Korine, is a veritable fiesta of tits and ass. And we’re not talking about your daddy’s Mousketeer variety of bikini-and-tramp-crack-clad tits and ass, a’la Annette Funicello, but the sort of gone-wild nekkid tits and ass that shake and undulate in drunken slow motion, so that even on the most toned collegiate body you can see ripples of cellulose motoring around under the burnt umber of tanned skin.

Yes, yes, yes: Spring Breakers, the latest film by aging wunderkind Harmony Korine, is a veritable fiesta of tits and ass. And we’re not talking about your daddy’s Mousketeer variety of bikini-and-tramp-crack-clad tits and ass, a’la Annette Funicello, but the sort of gone-wild nekkid tits and ass that shake and undulate in drunken slow motion, so that even on the most toned collegiate body you can see ripples of cellulose motoring around under the burnt umber of tanned skin.

March 21, 2013 01:00 AM

Once upon a time, I was an Oz purist. Not for the 1939 movie, though I liked it well enough, but for L. Frank Baum’s books, which I read until they were ragged. The first time I saw the cover of Wicked, Gregory Maguire’s novel about the Wicked Witch of the West, I stopped dead, thinking: One does not do that to Oz.

Once upon a time, I was an Oz purist. Not for the 1939 movie, though I liked it well enough, but for L. Frank Baum’s books, which I read until they were ragged. The first time I saw the cover of Wicked, Gregory Maguire’s novel about the Wicked Witch of the West, I stopped dead, thinking: One does not do that to Oz.

March 14, 2013 01:00 AM

Filmmaker Peter Wang’s In the Family came to him in a mental flash. “I had a glimpse of this family, the family at the center of the movie — two dads playing soccer with their kids,” Wang tells EW.

Filmmaker Peter Wang’s In the Family came to him in a mental flash. “I had a glimpse of this family, the family at the center of the movie — two dads playing soccer with their kids,” Wang tells EW. It seems simple; a fleeting spark that captures the imagination, but Wang’s feature-length directorial debut tackles some complex issues — death, same-sex partnership in the South, guardianship, a custody battle — and it does so with unconventional filmmaking. 

March 7, 2013 01:00 AM

It’s never too late to start watching the Up movies. The British documentary series began in 1964 with Seven Up, in which children from varied socio-economic backgrounds were interviewed. The series follows 14 (give or take) of these kids, revisiting their lives every seven years.

It’s never too late to start watching the Up movies. The British documentary series began in 1964 with Seven Up, in which children from varied socio-economic backgrounds were interviewed. The series follows 14 (give or take) of these kids, revisiting their lives every seven years.

February 28, 2013 01:00 AM

On May 24, 1990, in Oakland, Calif., a car bomb exploded beneath the seats of Earth First! activists Darryl Cherney and Judi Bari. Cherney escaped with minor injuries while Bari, who had to be cut out of the car, was disabled by the blast. Before Bari was out of the hospital, the duo found themselves as the main suspects in the attack.

On May 24, 1990, in Oakland, Calif., a car bomb exploded beneath the seats of Earth First! activists Darryl Cherney and Judi Bari. Cherney escaped with minor injuries while Bari, who had to be cut out of the car, was disabled by the blast. Before Bari was out of the hospital, the duo found themselves as the main suspects in the attack. 

February 14, 2013 01:00 AM

At their best, each year’s Oscar-nominated short films are a chance to see something new, or unusual, or unlikely. Short films can take different chances with structure, rely less heavily on traditional narrative or capture a moment rather than laying out a whole tale.

At their best, each year’s Oscar-nominated short films are a chance to see something new, or unusual, or unlikely. Short films can take different chances with structure, rely less heavily on traditional narrative or capture a moment rather than laying out a whole tale. But this year’s crop of live action shorts is a bit of a letdown in this regard: They tend toward the traditional, are predictably heart-wrenching or fall a little short in one aspect while succeeding in others. 

February 7, 2013 01:00 AM

It’s almost easier to talk about what director Michael Haneke (Cache, The White Ribbon) doesn’t do than what he does. He doesn’t hold the audience’s hand; musical cues don’t appear to direct your emotions and stories don’t neatly wind up to logical conclusions.

It’s almost easier to talk about what director Michael Haneke (Cache, The White Ribbon) doesn’t do than what he does. He doesn’t hold the audience’s hand; musical cues don’t appear to direct your emotions and stories don’t neatly wind up to logical conclusions. He doesn’t give you a handy backstory or motivation for his characters, but expects you to find it in their interactions and, notably, their homes. In interviews, he avoids questions about themes, preferring to leave interpretation to his audiences.

January 31, 2013 01:00 AM

Nearly every brief summary of Jacques Audiard’s Rust and Bone borders on the absurd, or at least sounds mawkishly sentimental.

Nearly every brief summary of Jacques Audiard’s Rust and Bone borders on the absurd, or at least sounds mawkishly sentimental: A young man, mostly unemployed and recently in charge of his five-year-old son, strikes up a relationship with a killer-whale trainer who is terribly injured in a freak accident. It sounds like a story that will veer into sentimental territory early, overflowing with reminders about the fragility and beauty of life.

January 24, 2013 01:00 AM

David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook, now heavy under the weight of award-season expectations, is trying to be one (or more) of the following three things: 1. A romantic comedy; 2. A movie about mental illness, and 3. A peculiar send-up of one or both of these options.

David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook, now heavy under the weight of award-season expectations, is trying to be one (or more) of the following three things: 1. A romantic comedy; 2. A movie about mental illness, and 3. A peculiar send-up of one or both of these options.